President Donald Trump weighed in on the apparent failure of the Senate Republican healthcare bill via Twitter on Tuesday.
“We were let down by all of the Democrats and a few Republicans,” the president tweeted. “Most Republicans were loyal, terrific & worked really hard. We will return!”
The Senate bill, named the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), fell apart Monday night when two GOP senators — Jerry Moran of Kansas and Mike Lee of Utah — said they would not support a vote to bring the bill to the floor of the Senate for debate.
That left the Republican leadership with four defections on the procedural vote, called a motion to proceed, more than enough to block the bill. Moran and Lee joined Susan Collins of Maine and Rand Paul of Kentucky as opponents of the motion.
According to Politico, Trump was blindsided by the defections of Moran and Lee. The president was reportedly in the middle of a strategy dinner for the bill when the announcement was made and told Republicans they would look like “dopes” if they did not repeal President Obama’s signature health law.
Trump, in a follow-up tweet on Tuesday, once again advocated for the failure of Obamacare to bring Democrats and the public around on a Republican plan.
“As I have always said, let ObamaCare fail and then come together and do a great healthcare plan,” Trump tweeted. “Stay tuned!”
There is a possibility that Trump could cause the collapse of Obamacare himself by ending critical cost-sharing reduction payments. Doing so would likely lead to a mass exodus from the individual exchanges by insurers and skyrocketing costs for Americans in those markets.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Monday night that he would abandon the current tactic of repealing and replacing Obamacare at the same time and advance a repeal-only bill that would go into effect in two years. This would theoretically give Congress two years to come together on a new plan.
Trump appeared to support this idea in a tweet on Monday night after Moran and Lee’s announcement.
“Republicans should just REPEAL failing ObamaCare now & work on a new Healthcare Plan that will start from a clean slate. Dems will join in!” Trump said.